Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Q&A: Cue cards keep Leno on track

Cue cards keep Leno on track

How does Jay Leno move so effortlessly from one joke to the next during his monologue? He does not seem to look at a board or teleprompter.

Ask the Times recently talked with a Florida couple who went to a Jay Leno show taping.

Diane and Curt Cowan of Sunrise said Leno uses old-fashioned cue cards instead of a teleprompter during his monologue and also when he first slides in behind his desk.

They said a Leno staffer stands next to the camera with a large stack of boards, and hands them to an assistant after Leno reads from them.

Leno also studies the cards during commercial breaks, they said, and the only time he did not use them was when he was talking to guests.

As a longtime standup comedian, Leno is pretty good about remembering his material. But he does make mistakes. At the taping the Cowans attended in late April, Leno misspoke four or five times. The producers fix it by dubbing in a correct word or phrases. At this taping, Leno was talking about the royal wedding and he said "Harry and Kate" instead of "William and Kate." After the show, the Cowans said, the producers asked the audience for quiet and had Leno dub in corrections with the same inflection.

'Dirty Jobs' likely to return

Is there going to be a new season of Dirty Jobs? The Discovery Channel website makes no mention of a return for Mike Rowe.

Nothing has been announced yet, but every indication we've seen is that there will be more Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe. Past seasons have started in October, and Rowe said on Twitter that likely would be the case again.

There have been six seasons and 154 episodes of the show, which always begins with this quote:

"My name's Mike Rowe, and this is my job. I explore the country looking for people who aren't afraid to get dirty — hardworking men and women who earn an honest living doing the kinds of jobs that make civilized life possible for the rest of us. Now, get ready to get dirty."

Rowe, 49, also has been seen frequently on TV in commercials for Ford, Lee jeans and Viva paper towels, and narrates Deadliest Catch.

You can read more about him at his website,

Prior seasons commonly re-air

My wife and I have been avoiding watching any repeats of the AMC series The Killing because we did not see Episode 1. We realize we missed the series in its entirety on Sundance. Are there any plans for AMC or Sundance to run Season 1 in its entirety before Season 2 begins?

Nothing has been announced, but it is common for a network to re-air a prior season just before the new season starts. AMC will likely do that with The Killing right before the start of Season 2 sometime next year.

Q&A: Cue cards keep Leno on track 09/05/11 [Last modified: Monday, September 5, 2011 4:30am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays late-night bullpen shuffle: Alvarado, Pruitt down; Kolarek up


    The Rays shuffled their bullpen again after Tuesday's game, sending down struggling LHP Jose Alvarado along with RHP Austin Pruitt to Triple-A Durham, and turning next to LHP Adam Kolarek, who will make his major-league debut at age 28,

  2. Tampa Bay Times honored for top investigative story in Gerald Loeb annual business awards


    The Tampa Bay Times was a co-winner in the investigative category for one of the highest honors in business journalism.

    Tampa Bay Times current and former staff writers William R. Levesque, Nathaniel Lash and Anthony Cormier were honored in the investigative category for their coverage of "Allegiant Air" in the 60th Anniversary Gerald Loeb Awards for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism. 


  3. Pasco woman gives birth to child fathered by 11 year old, deputies say


    A Port Richey woman was arrested Tuesday, nearly three years after deputies say she gave birth to a child fathered by an 11-year-old boy.

    Marissa Mowry, 25, was arrested Tuesday on charges she sexually assaulted an 11-year-old and gave birth to his child. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  4. For good of the Rays, Tim Beckham should embrace move to second

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — The acquisition of slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria said a lot of things, most notably that the Rays are serious about making in-season moves to bolster their chances to make the playoffs, with a reliever, or two, next on the shopping list.

    PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 27:  Tim Beckham #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates with teammates after scoring during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 27, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) 700011399
  5. St. Petersburg showdown: Kriseman faces Baker for first time tonight at the Rev. Louis Murphy Sr.'s church

    Local Government

    A standing-room-only crowd packed a Midtown church banquet hall Tuesday to witness the first face-off between Mayor Rick Kriseman and former mayor Rick Baker in what is a watershed mayoral contest in the city's history.

    Former Mayor Rick Baker, left, is challenging incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman, right, to become St. Petersburg mayor.